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I'm still not sure...

DONE with my ER rotation!  As a matter of fact that means I'm DONE with clinicals period!  Woohoo!!!  Friday was my last real clinical in nursing school.  I worked 6 twelve hour shifts in the ER & I can truly say that I would feel 90% comfortable going straight to the ER from nursing school.  Besides the actual trauma codes that come in, I feel like I could easily handle what goes on in that ER straight out of nursing school.  I thought that I would LOVE ER, and I did to an extent, but what I really found out in this clinical was that I just DON'T KNOW.  I don't know exactly what I want to do yet as far as being a nurse, and honestly I just don't think I would really LOVE any nursing job. I know that I want to be a NP & therefore nursing positions to me don't really hold a great appeal. That being said, I don't know yet 100% what dept. I want to to work in, and what I really came to realize is that I don't think I'm going to know until I actually get to do it myself.  I don't think you can get a real representation of how a job really is until you actually do it.  Therefore, I will keep my med/surg job and work there and geri psych until I feel like I am comfortable with these positions and then I will either love it and stay there while I continue my masters or I will move on.  The only thing is I don't think I want to be making a bunch of changes while I'm in the middle of nurse practitioner school.  I'm thinking that it will probably just be easier to stay in one place, even if it becomes mundane.  I don't know how much I would enjoy orienting to new units over & over while I'm trying to concentrate on NP school.  Ok, enough about me, let me tell you a sad story about a nurse in my unit (well sad to me, but not in the way you're probably thinking). 

While I was working with one particular preceptor we got to talking about getting our master's degree.  This nurse said that she wanted to go back and get her PA. I asked her why she would get her PA & not her NP & she said that there were mostly PA's that worked in this ER and she found that they were more respected by the docs than the NP's. She said she felt like when the NP's were in the ER there was a "turf war" going on, whereas when the PA's were there that they "knew their place" and that they just seemed to work better with the docs.

This was sad to me on two levels.  First that a nurse would not want to further her education AS A NURSE.  While I don't want to be a floor nurse, I am PROUD to be a nurse.  I love the profession I've chosen and can't wait to further my education as a NURSE.  I don't EVER want to be a PA or a MD, I want to be what I decided to be 5 years ago, a well educated, highly respected NURSE.  I hate that nurses see being a NP as a negative thing and I made a vow that day to make sure to always show respect for my profession and when I become a NP to make sure to be the best I can be so that I don't give my profession a bad name.  Second, it made me sad for the PA's that she thought that they "knew their place".  PA school is HARD, and I feel that no matter what they are a great addition to any team, and honestly once all this NP stuff dies down I see PA's following suit in wanting independent practice. 

Anyhoo, I made two really great friends on my clinical rotation & I hope that one day I will work with them again, who knows maybe even in that ER.  The director said she hires new grads, but I don't think I'll go that path as a new grad.  I know enough about myself to know that I need what I'm going to get from med/surg.  I need to learn a little more about disease processes & medicines.  And while I KNOW I don't want to be a med/surg nurse for any real length of time, I also didn't feel that total "aha" moment on any of my rotations, so for now to med/surg I go.

Here's a pic of our last day in clinical! I seriously love my nursing buddies!

I'm the 3rd one from the left


  1. Well look at you all nurse-looking in your picture and stuff. Good job on finishing all those clinical rotations. Sorry you weren't able to pin down that "aha" moment. Either way you'll be a great nurse! The profession needs more like-minded nurses like yourself. Stay strong and make us proud! Take care :-)

    1. Thanks!! I'm looking forward to where the journey will take me :D

  2. I'm happy that you have a goal to project professionalism and excellence and continue with your education. But, don't be too hard on that nurse, she has been working in the trenches and has witnessed the true pecking order in the medical field. Honestly, when I changed careers to nursing, I was absolutely horrified and shocked with the lack of respect toward nurses. I thought it was just the hospital system that I first started working in, but after many years it sadly isn't the case. It is the culture and sometimes it beats you down. I hope it is different for you.

    1. Oh I don't blame her at all. I just have a different thought. If you work in a place where NP's aren't respected, BUT you've gotten a level of respect as a nurse, then it just seems as if it would behoove that person to take that respect & turn it into further respect for a NP, not leave the profession & switch to PA. I hope that one day NP's will get the respect they deserve but honestly since the medical profession is still a "good 'ol boy" system I think that until more men become NP's then that won't happen any time soon. Unfortunately men still respect other men more than they respect women, even on a level playing field.


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